UC-NRLF

773

LIBRA.RY

UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA.

PACIFIC THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY.

Accession .84627... Claz*

ALCOVE,

aeifie f2|lt£ologleal

PRESENTED BY

SHELF,

WALKS AND TALKS

AMERICAN FARMER IN ENGLAND.

GF JRGE P. PUTNAM, 155 BROADWAY.

M. D CCG . LI J.

Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1852,

BY GEORRK P. PUTNAM,

In the Clerk'* Offie« of the District Court of the United States for the Southern District of New York.

B1LLIX A BROTHERS,

0 NORTH WILLIAM- ST.. N. I

.T. K. TROW, PRINTS*,

ANN-STRKMT.

TO

GEORGE GEDDES,

Xate oftlje lunate of $m fork,

VICE-PRESIDENT OK THE STATE AGRICULTURAL SOCIETY, PRESIDENT OF THE ONONDAGA COUNTY AGRICULTURAL SOCIETY,

ETC., ETC., ETC., THIS VOLUME IS MOST RESPECTFULLY AND GRATEFULLY

.84627

PREFACE.

I DO not deem it necessary to apologize for this memoir of a farmer's visit to England. Every man in travelling will be directed in peculiar paths of observation by his peculiar tastes, habits, and personal interests, and there will always be a greater or less class who will like to hear of just what he liked to see. With a hearty country appetite for narrative, I have spent, previous to my own journey, a great many long winter even ings in reading the books so frequently written by our literary tourists, upon England ; and although I do not recollect one of them, the author of which was a farmer, or whose habits of life, professional interests, associations in society, and ordinary standards of comparison were not altogether different from my own, I remember none from which I did not derive entertainment and instruction.

Notwithstanding, therefore, the triteness of the field, I may presume to think, that there will be a great many who will yet enjoy to follow me over it, and this although my gait and carriage should not be very elegant, but so only as one farmer's leg and one sailor's leg with the help of a short, crooked, half-grown academic sapling, for a walking stick, might be expected to carry a man along with a head and a heart of his own.

And as it is especially for farmers and farmers' families that I have written, I trust that all who try to read the book, will be willing to come into a warm, good-natured, broad country kitchen fireside rela tion with me, and permit me to speak my mind freely, and in such lan guage as I can readily command on all sorts of subjects that come in my way, forming their own views from the facts that I give them, and taking my opinions for only just what they shall seem to be worth.

Some explanation of a "few of the intentions that gave direction to my movements in travelling may be of service to the reader.

The wages, and the cost and manner of living of the labouring men, and the customs with regard to labour of those countries and districts, from which foreign writers on economical subjects are in the habit of deriving their data, had been made a subject of more than ordinary and other than merely philanthropical interest to me. from an experience of the diffi culty of applying their calculations to the different circumstances under which work must be executed in the United States. My vocation as a

2 PREFACE.

farmer, too, had led me for a long time to desire to know more of the prevailing, ordinary, and generally accepted practices of agriculture, than I could learn from Mr. Coleman's book, or from the observations of most of the European correspondents of our agricultural periodicals, the attention of these gentlemen having been usually directed to the ex ceptional improved modes of cultivation which prevail only among the amateur agriculturists and the bolder and more enterprising farmers.

The tour was made in company with two friends, whose purposes somewhat influence the character of the narrative. One of them, my brother, hoped by a course of invigorating exercise, simple diet, and restraint from books and other in-door and sedentary luxuries, to re establish his weakened health, and especially to strengthen his eyes, frequent failures of which often seriously annoyed and interrupted him in the study of his profession. The other, our intimate friend from boyhood, desired to add somewhat to the qualifications usually inquired after in a professed teacher and adviser of mankind, by such a term and method of study as he could afford to make, of the varying develop ments of human nature under different biases and institutions from those of his own land.

We all considered, finally, that it should be among those classes which form the majority of the people of a country that the truest exhibition of national character should be looked for, and that in their condition should be found the best evidence of the wisdom of national institutions.

In forming the details of a plan by which we could, within certain limits of time and money, best accomplish such purposes as I have indicated, we were much indebted to the information and advice given by Bayard Taylor in his " Views a- Foot."

The part now published contains the narrative of the earlier, and to us most interesting, though not the most practically valuable, part of our journey. I was in the habit of writing my diary usually in the form of a letter, to be sent as occasion offered to friends at home. It is from this desultory letter-diary, with such revision and extension and rilling up of gaps, as my memory and pocket-book notes afford, that this volume has been formed. I have most desired to bring before my brother farmers and their families such things that I saw in England as have conveyed practical agricultural information or useful sugges tions to myself, and such evidences of simply refined tastes, good feel ings, and enlarged Christian sentiments among our English brethren, as all should enjoy to read of. It was my design to have somewhat ex tended this volume, that it might contain a greater proportion of more distinctly rural matter, but the liberal proposal of Mr. Putnam to in clude it in the excellent popular Series he is now publishing, makes a limit to its length necessary. Should I have reason to believe, however, that I have succeeded in the purposes which led me to write for the public, I shall be most happy at another time to continue my narrative.

FEED. LAW OLMSTED. Toaomock Farm, ftuthride, Staten blmd.

CONTENTS.

CHAPTER I. Emigrant Passenger Agents. Second Cabin. Mutiny. Delay. Departure. ... 9

CHAPTER II.

At Sea.— Incidents.— Sea Sociability.— A Yarn.— Sea Life.— Characters.— En glish Radicals,— Skeptics.— Education.— French Infidelity.— Phrenology.— Theology 14

CHAPTER III. Sailors. " Sogers." Books. Anecdotes 37

CHAPTER IV. On Soundings. English Small Craft. Harbour of Liverpool 41

CHAPTER V.

The first of England —The Streets.— A Railway Station.— The Docks at Night.— Prostitutes.— Temperance.— The Still Life of Li verpool.— A Market 50

CHAPTER VI.

The People at Liverpool. Poverty. Merchants. Shopkeepers. Women. Soldiers. Children. Donkeys and Dray Horses 60

CHAPTER VII.

Irish Beggars. Condition of Labourers. Cost of Living. Prices. Bath House. Quarantine. The Docks. Street Scene. " Coming Yankee " over Non sense.— Artistic Begging 65

CHAPTER VIII.

Birkenhead. Ferry-Boats. Gruff Englishman. The Abbey. Flour. Market.

—The Park.— A Democratic Institution.— Suburban Villas; &c 74

1*

4 CONTENTS.

CHAPTER IX.

A Railway Ride. Second Class. Inconvenient Arrangements. First Walk in the Country. England itself. A Rural Landscape. Hedges. Approach to a Hamlet.— The old Ale-House and the old John Bull.— A Talk with Coun try People. Notions of America. Free Trade. The Yew Tree. The old Rural Church and Graveyard. A Park Gate. A Model Farmer. The old Village Inn.— A Model Kitchen.— A Model Landlady 85

CHAPTER X.

Talk with a Farmer; With a Tender-Hearted Wheelwright. An Amusing Story. Notions of America. Supper. Speech of the English. Pleasant Tones.— Quaint Expressions.— The twenty-ninth of May.— Zaccheus in the Oak Tree.— Education.— Bed-chambor.— A Nightcap and— a Nightcap 92

CHAPTER XL

The Break of Day.— A Full Heart.— Familiar Things.— The Village at Sunrise.— Flowers.— Birds.— Dog Kennels.—" The Squire" and " The Hall."— Rooks.— Visit to a Small Farm.— The Cows.— The Milking.— The Dairy-Maids.— The Stables.— Manure.— Bones.— Pasture.— White Clover.— Implements.— Carts. —The English Plough and Harrow : . 99

CHAPTER XII.

Breakfast at the Inn.— A Tale of High Life.— The Garden of the Inn.— An old Farm-House.— Timber Houses.— Labourer's Cottages.— Wattles and Nog gin Walls. A "Ferme Ornee." A Lawn Pasture. The Copper-Leaved Beech.— Tame Black Cattle.— Approach to Chester 104

CHAPTER XIII Chester without.— A Walk on the Walls.— Antiquities.— Striking Contrasts. . . Ill

CHAPTER XIV.

Chester within.— Peculiarities of Building.— The Rows.— The old Sea-Captain. —Romancing.— An Old Inn.— Old English Town Houses.— Timber Houses.— Claiming an Inheritance.— A Cook Shop.— One of the Alleys.— Breaking into the Cathedral.— Expulsion.— The Curfew 119

CHAPTER XV.

Chester Market.— The Town Common.— Race-Course.— The Yeomanry Cavalry, and the Militia of England.— Public Wash-House.— " Mr. Chairman." 128

CHAPTER XVI.

Visit to Eaton Hall.— The largest Arch in the World.— The Outer Park.— Back woods' Farming.— The Deer Park.— The Hall.— The Parterre.— The Lawn.— The Fruit Garden.— Stables 133

CONTENTS. 5

CHAPTER XVII.

Gamekeeper— Game Preserves.— Eccleston, a Pretty Village.— The School- House. Draining. Children Playing. The River-side Walk. Pleasure Parties.— A Contrasting Glimpse of a Sad Heart.— Saturday Night.— Ballad Singer.— Mendicants.— Row in the Tap-Room.— Woman's Feebleness.— Chester Beer, and Beer-Drinking 140

CHAPTER XVIII.

Character of the Welsh.— The Cathedral ; the Clergy, Service, Intoning, the Ludicrous and the Sublime.— A Reverie.— A Revelation.— The Sermon.— Communion. Other Churches. Sunday Evening. Character of the Townspeople 150

CHAPTER XIX.

Clandestine Architectural Studies.— A Visit to the Marquis of Westminster's Stud.— Stable Matters 162

CHAPTER XX.

The Cheshire Cheese District and English Husbandry upon Heavy Soils.— Pas tures.— Their Permanence.— The Use of Bones as a Manure in Cheshire.— A Valuable Remark to Owners of Improved Neat Stock.— Breeds of Dairy Stock.— Horses 169

CHAPTER XXI.

Tillage. Size of Farms. Condition of Labourers. Fences. Hedges. Surface Drainage.— Under Drainage.— Valuable Implements for Stiff Soils, not used in the United States 177

CHAPTER XXII.

The General Condition of Agriculture. Rotation of Crops. Productiveness. Seeding down to Grass. Comparison of English and American Practice.— Practical Remarks.— Rye-Grass, Clover.— Biennial Grasses.— Guano.— Lime. —The Condition of Labourers, Wages, etc.— Dairy-Maids.— Allowance of Beer 183

CHAPTER XXIII. Remarks on the Cultivation of Beet and Mangel- Wurzel 191

CHAPTER XXIV.

Delightful Walk by the Dee Banks, and through Eaton Park.— Wrexham.— A Fair. Maids by a Fountain. The Church. Jackdaws. The Tap-Room and Tap-Room Talk. Political Deadness of the Labouring Class. A Methodist Bagman 194

6 CONTENTS.

CHAPTER XXV.

Morning Walk through a Coal District.— Ruabon.— An Optimist with a Welsh Wife. Graveyard Notes. A Stage- Wagon. Taxes. Wynstay Park.— Thorough Draining A Glimpse of Cottage Life. " Sir Watkins Williams Wyn." 199

CHAPTER XXVI.

Stone Houses. Ivy. Virginia Creeper. A Visit to a Welsh Horse-Fair. En glish Vehicles.— Agricultural Notes.— Horses.— Breeds of Cattle ; Herefords, Welsh, and Smutty Pates.— Character of the People.— Dress.— Powis Park. . 206

CHAPTER XXVII.

English Vehicles. A Feudal Castle and Modern Aristocratic Mansion. Aris tocracy in 1850.— Primogeniture.— Democratic Tendency of Political Senti ments.— Disposition towards the United States.— Combativeness.— Slavery. 212

CHAPTER XXVIII.

Paintings. Cromwell. Pastoral Ships. Family Portraits and Distant Rela tions. Family Apartments. Personal Cleanliness. The Wrekin 224

CHAPTER XXIX.

Visit to a Farm.— Farm-House and Farmery.— Fatting Cattle.— Sheep.— Vetches. Stack Yard. Steam Threshing. Turnip Sowing. Excellent Work. Tram Road.— Wages 228

CHAPTER XXX. Visit to two English Common Schools 232

Appendix A 235

Appendix B 246

LIST OF CUTS,

DRAWN ON WOOD BT A. FIELD, FROM SKETCHES BY THE AUTHOR.

1. THE SCHOOL-HOUSE (vignette,

2. THE ENGLISH COASTEB (calm), . . . . .45

3. THE ENGLISH COASTER (squalls*), .... 47

4. THE ENGLISH PLOUGH (vertical), ..... 103

5. THE ENGLISH PLOUGH (horizontal), .... 103

6. THE TIMBER HOUSE (old farm-house), .... 10T

7. OLD ENGLISH DOMESTIC ARCHITECTURE (Chester, IQtTi century), . 124

8. OLD ENGLISH DOMESTIC ARCHITECTURE (Chester, IQtk century), . 149

9. THE CLOD CRUSHER, ...... 180

10. THE ULET CULTIVATOR, ....... 182

11. THE STAGE WAGON, ...... 202

12. OLD ENGLISH DOMESTIC ARCHITECTURE (the village schoolmaster's

cottage), ........ 207

SBulfos anii

AMERICAN FARMER IN ENGLAND,

CHAPTER I.

EMIGRANT PASSENGER AGENTS. SECOND CABIN. MUTINY. DELAY.

DEPARTURE.

¥E intended, if we could be suited, to take a second-cabin state-room for our party of three, and to accommodate me my friends had agreed to wait till " after planting" While I therefore hurried on the spring work upon my farm, they in the city were examining ships and consulting passen ger agents. The confidence in imposition those acquire who are in the habit of dealing with emigrant passengers, was amusingly shown in the assurance with which they would attempt to lie down the most obvious objections to what they had to offer ; declaring that a cabin disgusting with filth and the stench of bilge- water was sweet and clean, that darkness in which they would be groping was very light (a trick, cer-

84627

10 AN AMERICAN FARMER IN ENGLAND.

tainly, not confined to their trade), that a space in which one could not stand erect, or a berth like a coffin, was very roomy, and so forth.

Finally we were taken in by the perfect impudence and utter simplicity in falsehood of one of them, an underling of " a respectable house" advertised passenger agents of the ship which, on the lie being represented to it, thought proper to express its " regret" at the young man's error, but could not be made to see that it was proper for them to do any thing more, the error not having been discovered in time for us to conveniently make other arrangements.

We had engaged a " family-room" exclusively for our selves, in the very large and neatly-fitted cabin of a new, clean first-class packet. We thought the price asked for it very low, and to secure it beyond a doubt, had paid half the money down at the agent's desk, and taken a receipt, put some of our baggage in it, locked the door, and taken the key. The ship was hauling out from her pier when we went on board with our trunks, and found the spacious second cabin had been stored half full of cotton, and the remaining space was lumbered up with ship stores, spare sails, &c. The ad joining rooms were occupied by steerage passengers, and the steward was trying keys to let them into ours. The mate cursed us for taking the key, and the captain declared no one had been authorized to make such arrangements as had been entered into with us, and that he should put whom he pleased into the room.

We held on to the key, and appealed first to the agents and then to the owners. Finally we agreed to take a single room-mate, a young man whom they introduced to us, and whose appearance promised agreeably, and with this compro mise were allowed to retain possession. The distinction between second cabin and steerage proved to be an imagina-

PASSENGER AGENTS.— MUTINY. \\

tion of the agents those who had asked for a steerage pas sage were asked a little less, and had berths given them in the second-cabin state-rooms, the proper steerage being filled up with freight. The captain, however, directed the cook to serve us, allowed us a light at night in our room, and some other extra conveniences and privileges, and generally treated us after we got to sea as if he considered us rather more of the " gentleman" class than the rest ; about two dollars apiece more, I suppose

After the ship had hauled out into the stream, and while she lay in charge of the first mate, the captain having gone ashore, there was a bit of mutiny among the seamen. Nearly the whole crew refused to do duty, and pledged each other never to take the ship to sea. Seeing that the officers, though pre pared with loaded pistols, were not disposed to act rashly, we offered to assist them, for the men had brought up their chests and \vere collecting handspikes and weapons, and threatened to take a boat from the davits if they were not sent on shore. It was curious to see how the steerage passengers, before they had any idea of the grounds of the quarrel, but as if by in stinct, almost to a man, took sides against the lawful authority.

Having had some experience with the ways of seamen, I also went forward to try to pacify them. (Like most Con- necticut boys, I knocked about the world a few years before I settled down, and one of these I spent in a ship's forecastle.) The only thing the soberest of them could say was, that a man had been killed on the ship, and they knew she was going to be unlucky ; and that they had been shipped in her when too drunk to know what they were about. Perceiving that all that the most of them wanted was to get ashore, that they might have their spree out, and as there was no reason ing with them, I advised the mate to send them a fiddle and let them get to dancing. He liked the kfafr, but had no fid-

12 AN AMERICAN FARMER IN ENGLAND.

die, so as the next most pacifying amusement, ordered the cook to give them supper. They took to this kindly, and after using it up went to playing monkey shines, and with singing, dancing, and shouting kept themselves in good humour until late in the evening, when they, one by one, dropped off, and turned in. The next morning they were all drunk and sulky, and contented themselves with refusing tc come on deck when ordered.

When the captain came on board and learned the state of things, he took a hatchet, and with the officers and carpenter jumped into the forecastle, and with a general knocking down and kicking out, got them all on deck. He then broke open their chests and took from them six jugs of grog which they had concealed, and threw them overboard. As thejr floated astern, a Whitehall boatman picked them up, and after securing the last, took a drink and loudly wished us good luck.

Two or three of the most violent were sent on shore (not punished, but so rewarded), and their places supplied by others. The rest looked a little sour, and contrived to meet with a good many accidents as long as the shore boats kept about us ; but when we were fairly getting clear of the land, and the wind hauled a bit more aft, and the passengers began to wish she would stop for just one moment, and there came a whirr-rushing noise from under the bows the hearty yo- ho heave-o-hoii with which they roused out the stu'n-sails was such as nobody the least bit sulky could have begun to have found voice for.

A handsome Napoleonic performance it was of the cap tain's : the more need that I should say that in my mind he A disgraced himself by it ; because, while we lay almost within hail of the properly constituted officers of the law, and under the guns of a United States fortress such dashing violence

THE START. 13

was unnecessary and lawless ; only at sea had he the right, or could he be justified in using it.

I suppose that some such difficulties occur at the sailing of half the ships that leave New York. I have been on board a number as they were getting under way, and in every one of them there has been more or less trouble arising from the intoxicated condition of the crew. Twice I have seen men fall overboard, when first ordered aloft, in going down the harbour.

The ship did not go to sea until three days after she was advertised to sail, though she had her crew, stores, and steerage passengers on board all that time. I do not know the cause of her detention ; it seemed unnecessary, as other large ships sailed while we lay idle; and if unnecessary, it was not honest. The loss of three days' board, and diminution by so much of the stores, calculated to last out the passage, and all the other expenses and inconveniences occasioned by it to the poor steerage passengers, may seem hardly worthy of notice ; and I should not mention it, if such delays, often much more protracted, were not frequent, sometimes adding materially to the suffering always attending a long passage.

At noon on the 3d of May we passed out by the light ship of the outer bar, and soon after eight o'clock that even ing the last gleam of Fire-Island light disappeared behind the dark line of unbroken horizon.

2

14 AN AMERICAN FARMER IN ENGLAND.

CHAPTER II.

AT SEA. INCIDENTS. SEA SOCIABILITY. A YARN. SEA LIFE. CHARACTERS.

ENGLISH RADICALS. SKEPTICS. EDUCATION. FRENCH INFIDELITY.

PHRENOLOGY. THEOLOGY.

At Sea, May 23.

TT7~E are reckoned to-day to be about one hundred and fifty ' ' miles to the westward of Cape Clear ; ship close-hauled, heading north, with a very dim prospect of the termination of our voyage. It has been thus far rather dull and unevent ful. We three have never been obliged to own ourselves actually sea-sick, but at any time during the first week we could hardly have declared that we felt perfectly well, and our appetites seemed influenced at every meal as if by a gloomy apprehension of what an hour might bring forth. Most of the other passengers have been very miserable in deed. I notice they recover more rapidly in the steerage than in the cabin. This I suppose to be owing to their situa tion in the middle of the ship, where there is the least motion, to their simple diet, and probably to their having less temp tation to eat freely, and greater necessity to " make an effort," and move about in fresh air.

We have met one school of small whales. There might have been fifty of them, tumbling ponderously over the waves, in sight at once. Occasionally one would rise lazily up so near, that, as he caught sight of us, we could seem to see an expression of surprise and alarm in his stolid, black

THE VOYAGE. 15

face, and then he would hastily throw himself under again, with an energetic slap of his flukes.

One dark, foggy night, while we were " on the Banks," we witnessed a rather remarkable exhibition of marine pyro- techny. The whole water, as far as we could see, was lustrous white, while nearer the eye it was full of spangles, and every disturbance, as that caused by the movement of the ship, or the ripples from the wind, or the surging of the sea, was marked by fire flashes. Very singular spots, from the size of one's hand to minute sparks, frequently floated by, looking like stars in the milky-way. We noticed also several schools, numbering hundreds, of what seemed little fishes (perhaps an inch long), that darted here and there, comet-like, with great velocity. I tried, without success, to catch some of these. It w^as evident that, besides the ordinary phosphorescent animal- cula, there were various and distinct varieties of animated nature around us, such as are not often to be observed.

Some kind of sea-bird we have seen, I think, every day, and when at the greatest distance from land. Where is their home 1 is an oft-repeated question, and, What do they eat 1 They are mysteries, these feathered Bedouins. To-day, land and long-legged shore birds are coming on board of us. They fly tremulously about the ship, sometimes going off out of sight and back again, then lighting for a few moments on a spar or line of rigging. Some have fallen asleep so ; or suf fered themselves, though panting with apprehension, to be taken. One of these is a swallow, and another a wheatear. Some kind of a lark, but not recognisable by the English on board, was taken several days since. It had probably been lost from the Western Islands.

We have seen but very few vessels ; but the meeting with one of them was quite an event in sea life. She was coming from the eastward, wind north, and running free, when we

16 AN AMERICAN FARMER IN ENGLAND.

first saw her, but soon after took in her studding-sails and hauled up so as to come near us. When abeam, and about three miles distant, she showed German colours, laid aback her mainsail and lowered a quarter-boat, which we immedi ately squared away to meet, and ran up our bunting, every body on deck, and great excitement. With a glass we could see her decks loaded with emigrants ; and as her masts and sails appeared entirely uninjured, it could only be conjectured that she was distressed for provisions or water. The carpen ter was sent to sound the water tanks, and the mate to make an estimate of what stores might be safely spared, while we hastened to our rooms to scribble notes to send home. We finished them soon enough to see a neat boat, rowed by four men, come alongside, and a gentlemanly young officer mount nimbly up the side-ladder. He was received on deck by our second mate, and conducted aft by him to the cabin compan ion, where the captain, having put on his best dress-coat and new Broadway stove-pipe hat, stood, like a small king, digni- fiedly waiting. After the ceremony of presentation, the cap tain inquired, " Well, sir, what can I have the pleasure of doing for you ?" The young man replied that he came from

the ship so and so, Captain , who sent his compliments,

and desired " Vaat is te news ?" This cool motive for stop ping two ships in mid-ocean, with a fresh and favourable wind blowing for each, took the captain plainly aback; but he directly recovered, and taking him into the cabin, gave him a glass of wine and a few minutes' conversation with a most creditable politeness ; a chunk of ice and a piece of fresh meat were passed into the boat, and the steerage passengers threw some tobacco to the men in her. The young officer took our letters, with some cigars and newspapers, and went over the side again, without probably having perceived that we were any less gregarious beings than himself. The curbed

A "BOARDING-" ANECDOTE. 17

energy and suppressed vexation of our officers, however, showed itself before he was well seated in his boat, by the violent language of command, and the rapidity with which the yards were sharpened and the ship again brought to her course. ^

This occurrence brought to the mind of our "second dickey" that night, a boarding affair of his own, which he told us of in the drollest manner possible. I wish you could hear his drawl, and see his immoveably sober face, but twinkling eye, that made it all seem natural and just like him, as he spun us the yarn.

He was once, he said, round in the Pacific, in a Sag-Har bour whaler, "rayther smart, we accounted her," when they tried to speak an English frigate, and did not get quite near enough. So, as they had nothing else to do, they " up't and chased her," and kept after her without ever getting any nearer for nearly three days. Finally, the wind hauled round ahead and began to blow a little fresh, and they overhauled her very rapidly, so that along about sunset they found them selves coming well to windward of her, as they ran upon opposite tacks. They then hove-to, and he was sent in a boat to board her, and she promptly came-to also, and waited for him.

Dressed in a dungaree jumper, yellow oil-skin hat, and canvass trowsers, he climbed on board the frigate and was immediately addressed by the officer of the deck.

" Now then, sir, what is it ?"

" Are you the cap'en of this here frigate, sir ?"

" What's your business ?"

" Why, our cap'en sent his compliments to yourn, sir, and if you are a going home he wished you'd report the bark Lucreetshy Ann, of Sag,-Harbour, Cap'en J. Coffin Starbuck, thirty-seven days from Wahoo (Oahu), seven hundred and

2*

18 AN AMERICAN FARMER IN ENGLAND.

fifty barrels of sperm, and two hundred and fifty of whale ; guess we shall go in to Tuckeywarner (Talcahuano)."

"Is that all, sir?"

" Well, no ; the old man did say, if you was a mind to, he'd like to have me see if I could make a trade with yer for some tobacky. We hadn't had none now a going on two week, and he's a most sick. How is't yer mind to ?"

"Is that all your business, sir?"

"Well yes; I guess 'tis about all."

" I think you had better get into your boat, sir."

He thought so too, when he saw the main-yard imme diately after begin to swing round. As the officer stepped below, he went over the side. When he called out to have the painter let go though, he was told to wait a bit, and di rectly a small parcel of tobacco was handed down and the same officer, looking over the rail, asked,

" Did you say the Lucretia Ann?"

" Ay, ay, sir ; Lucreetshy Ann, of Sag-Harbour."

"Mr. Starboard, I believe."

" < Buck; sir, ' buck: How about this 'backey ?"

The lieutenant, raising his head, his cap, striking the main- sheet as it was being hauled down, was knocked off and fell into the wrater, when one of the whalers immediately lanced it and held it up dripping.

" Hallo, mister ; I say, what shall we do with this cap 1 Did you mean ter throw it in."

The officer once more looked over the side, with half a dozen grinning middies, and imperturbably dignified, replied,

" You will do me the favor to present it to Captain Buck, and say to him, if you please, that when he wishes to com municate with one of Her Majesty's ships again, it will be proper for him to do so in person."

" Oh, certainly oh, yes ; good night to yer. Here, let's

A GALE. 19

have that cap. Give way, now, boys," so saying he clapped it on the top of his old souwester, and as the frigate forged ahead, the boat dropped astern, and was pulled back to the Lucretia Ann.

We have had only three days of any thing like bad weather, and those we enjoyed, I think, quite as much as any. The storm was preceded by some twenty-four hours of a clear, fresh northwester, driving us along on our course with foaming, sparkling, and most exhilarating speed. It gives a fine sensa tion to be so borne along, like that of riding a great, power ful, and spirited horse, or of dashing yourself through the crashing surf, and in your own body breasting away the bil lows as they sweep down upon you. Gradually it grew more and more ahead, and blew harder and harder. When we came on deck early in the morning, the horizon seemed within a stone's throw, and there was a grand sight of dark- marbled swelling waves, rushing on tumultuously, crowding away and trampling under each other, as if panic-struck by the grey, lowering, misty clouds that were sweeping down with an appearance of intense mysterious purpose over them. The expression was of vehement energy blindly directed. The ship, lying-to under trifling storm-sail, seemed to have composed herself for a trial, and, neither advancing nor shrink ing back, rose and fell with more than habitual ease and dig nity. Having been previously accustomed only to the fidgety movements of a smaller class of vessels, I was greatly surprised and impressed by her deliberate 'movements ; the quietness and simplicity with which she answered the threats of the turbulent elements.

" If only that northwester had continued" every body is saying " we might have been in Liverpool by this." It's not unfashionable yet at sea to talk about the weather. I am

20 AN AMERICAN FARMER IN ENGLAND.

to write about what is most interesting us ! Well, the wind and weather. Bad time when it comes to that ? Well, now, here I am, sitting on a trunk, bracing myself between two berths, with my portfolio on my knees imagine the motion of the vessel, the flickering, inconstant half-light that comes through a narrow piece of inch-thick glass, which the people on deck are constantly crossing, exclamations from them, dash of waves and creaking of timber, and various noises both distracting and lullaby ing, and if you can't understand the difficulty of thinking connectedly, you may begin to that of writing.

John's eyes have been bad, and we have read aloud with him a good deal ; but I tell you it is hard work even to read on board ship. We have had some good talks, have listened to a good deal of music, and to a bad deal, and had a few staggering hops with the ladies on the quarter deck. We contrived a set of chess-men, cutting them out of card-board, fitting them with cork pedestals, and a pin-point to attach them to the board so they would not slip off or blow away. Charley has had some capital games, and I believe found his match with Dr. M., one of the cabin passengers returning home from the East Indies by way of California, who prom ises to introduce him at a London chess club.

I told you in my letter by the pilot-boat, how we had been humbugged about the second cabin. While this has reduced the cost of our passage to a very small sum, we have had almost every comfort that we should have asked. Our room is considerably more spacious, having been intended for a family apartment, and has the advantage of much less motion than those of the first cabin. For a ship's accommo dations it has, too, a quite luxurious degree of ventilation and light. There is a large port in it that we can open at pleasure, having only been obliged to close it during two nights of the

THE VOYAGE. 21

gale. Our stores have held out well, and the cook has served us excellently, giving us, particularly, nice fresh rolls, soups, omelettes, and puddings. We have hardly tasted our cured meat, and with this and our hard bread we are now helping out some of our more unfortunate neighbors. Split peas and portable soup (bouillon), with fresh and dried fruit, have been valuable stores ; even our friends in the cabin have been gladly indebted to us for the latter. Don't forget when you come to sea to have plenty of fruit.

As the captain desired us to use the quarter-deck privi leges, we have associated as we pleased with the first-cabin passengers, and found several valuable acquaintances among them. (Friend, rather, I should call one now.)

Our room-mate, a young Irish surgeon, is a very good fellow, apparently of high professional attainments, and pos sessed of a power of so concentrating his attention on a book or whatever he is engaged with, as not to be easily disturbed, and a general politeness in yielding to the tastes of the majority that we are greatly beholden to. He is a devoted admirer of Smith O'Brien, and thinks the Irish rising of '48 would have been successful, if 'he (O'B.) had not been too strictly honest and honorable a man to lead a popular revolt. Of what he saw and knew at that time, he has given us some interesting particulars, which lead me to think that the revo lutionary purpose, insurrection, or at least the insurrectionary purpose, and preparation was much more general, respectable, and formidable, than I have hitherto supposed.

Of his last winter's passage, in an emigrant ship, across the Atlantic, he gives us a most thrilling account.

He had been appointed surgeon of a vessel aK&ut to sail from a small port in Ireland. She was nearly ready for sea, the passengers collecting and stores taken on board, when some discovery was made that involved the necessity of

22 A^' AMERICAS FARMER IN ENGLAND.

withdrawing her. Another ship was procured from Liver pool, and the stores, passengers, doctor, and all, hastily trans ferred to her in the night, as soon as she arrived. They got to sea, and he found there was hardly a particle of any thing in the medicine chest. He begged the captain to put back, but the captain was a stubborn, reckless, devil-may-care fel low, and only laughed at him. That very night the cholera broke out. He went again to the captain, he beseeched him, he threatened him ; he told him that on his head must be the consequences ; the captain didn't care a rope yarn for the consequences, he would do any thing else to oblige the doctor, but go back he would not. The doctor turned the pigs out of the long-boat, and made a temporary hospital of it. It was a cold place, but any thing was better than that horrible steerage. Nevertheless, down into the steerage the doctor would himself go every morning, nor leave it till every soul had gone or been carried on deck before him. He searched the ship for something he could make medicine of. The car penter's chalk was the only thing that turned up. This he calcined and saved, to be used sparingly. He forced those who were the least sea-sick to become nurses ; convalescents and those with less dangerous illness, he placed beds for on the galley and the hen-coops, and made the captain give up his fowls and other delicacies to them. Fortunately fair weather continued, and with sleepless vigilance, and strength, as it seemed to him, almost miraculously sustained, he con tinued to examine and send on deck for some hours each day, every one of the three hundred passengers. On the first cholera symptoms appearing, he gave the patient chalk, and continued administering it in small but frequent doses until the spasmodic crisis commenced; thence he troubled him only with hot fomentations. The third day out a man died and was buried. The captain read the funeral service, and

EMIGRANT PASSENGERS. 23

after the body had disappeared beneath the blue water, the doctor took advantage of the solemn moment again to appeal to him.

" Captain, there are three hundred souls in this ship "

"Belay that, doctor; I'll see every soul of 'em in Davy's locker, sir, before I'll put my ship back for your cursed physic."

The doctor said no more, but turned away with a heavy heart to do his duty as best he could.

I cannot describe the horrors of that passage as he would. Nevertheless, as far as simple numbers can give it, you shall have the result.

Out of those three hundred souls, before the ship reached New York, there died one, and he, the doctor declared most soberly, was a very old man, and half dead with a chronic (something) when he came on board. So much for burnt chalk and fresh air !

But seriously, this story, which, as I have repeated it, I believe is essentially true, though not in itself a painful one, not the less strikingly shows with what villanous barbarity, by disregard or evasion of the laws of England, and the neglect or connivance of the port officers, the emigrant traffic is carried on. Some of the accounts of the three other medical men on board, who are also returning from passages in emigrant ships, would disgust a slave-trader. They say that many of the passengers will never go on deck unless they are driven or carried, and frequently the number of these is so great, that it is impossible to force them out of their berths, and they sometimes lie in them in the most filthy manner possible, without ever stepping out from the first heave of the sickening sea .till the American pilot is received on board. Then their wives, husbands, children, as the case may be, who have served them with food during

24 AN AMERICAN FARMER IN ENGLAND.

their prostration, get them up, and, if they can afford it, change their garments, throwing the old ones, with the bed and its accumulations, overboard. So, as any one may see, from a dozen ships a day often in New York, they come ashore with no disease but want of energy, but emaciated, enfeebled, infected, and covered with vermin. When we observe the listlessness, even cheerfulness, with which they accept the precarious and dog-like subsistence which, while in this condition, the already crowded city affords them, we see the misery and degradation to which they must have been habituated in their native land. When in a year after wards we find that the same poor fellows are plainly growing active, hopeful, enterprising, prudent, and, if they have been favourably situated, cleanly, tidy, and actually changing to their very bones as it seems tight, elastic, well-knit muscles taking the place of flabby flesh, as ambition and blessed discontent take the place of stupid indifference, -'we appre ciate, as the landlords and the government men of Ireland never can, what are the causes